The Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) on Tuesday sought compensation of Rs 5.6 crore from the Popular Front of India (PFI) State General Secretary, A. Abdul Sathar, for the damage and loss of revenue caused during the recent hartal called by the party to protest the arrest of its leaders.
In a petition filed before the Kerala High Court, the KSRTC said it had incurred huge losses by way of damage caused to its fleet by supporters of the hartal and revenue loss on account of the cancellation of trips. The petition said a substantial amount would be required to repair the 58 buses damaged by the hartal supporters.
It added that the mechanical wing of the corporation had assessed the damage and revenue loss due to cancellation of schedules. While the cost of damage would amount to Rs 9,71,115, revenue loss due to cancellation of trips was assessed at Rs 3,95,82,969. The loss of schedules during the repair of buses would be Rs 86,53,830 and the total loss of workforce due to cancellation of schedules came to Rs 14,13,468.
Therefore, the KSRTC was entitled to a total compensation of Rs 5,60,213,82 from the PFI state general secretary.
The petition said the loss incurred by the KSRTC had to be recovered from the perpetrators of the hartal as it was a result of their illegal and terrorising act against the hapless general public. It pointed out that the corporation, which usually makes approximately Rs 3.72 crore from the service of 62 per cent buses, made only Rs 2.13 crore on the hartal day. The approximate daily income of the KSRTC is Rs 6 crore and interruption of services on the day of the hartal would amount to Rs 4 crore.
Besides, the KSRTC had to pay Rs 1.10 crore daily to the consortium of banks as interest for the financial assistance availed. In fact, the corporation had been trying to increase the daily collection from Rs 6 crore to Rs 8 crore as it was the only way to survive on its own, without any financial assistance.